North Knoxville group makes quilts for veterans

North Knoxville group makes quilts for veterans

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Using donated threads and cloth, volunteers gather each week at a North Knoxville home, sewing for a common goal. Using donated threads and cloth, volunteers gather each week at a North Knoxville home, sewing for a common goal.
These aren't just any quilts. The "Quilts of Valor" will soon be wrapped around veterans who've served our country and who now are owed our appreciation. These aren't just any quilts. The "Quilts of Valor" will soon be wrapped around veterans who've served our country and who now are owed our appreciation.
"I can wrap a quilt around a soldier or veteran and thank him for his service, and as I wrap him in that quilt, it's just like wrapping him with hugs from all the people who've made that quilt," said Dennis Taylor. "I can wrap a quilt around a soldier or veteran and thank him for his service, and as I wrap him in that quilt, it's just like wrapping him with hugs from all the people who've made that quilt," said Dennis Taylor.
Three World War II veterans were wrapped in the love of a thankful nation this week. Three World War II veterans were wrapped in the love of a thankful nation this week.
"I have a husband who was in World War II and also he served in Korea. I just have a great feeling for the veterans," said Wanda Brown. "I have a husband who was in World War II and also he served in Korea. I just have a great feeling for the veterans," said Wanda Brown.

By GENE PATTERSON
6 News Anchor/Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - It was hard to escape thinking about our military veterans on Veterans Day, but the thoughts of one group in North Knoxville go to veterans just about every day. They also put those thoughts into action.

Stitch by stitch, square by square, these volunteers put their hearts, souls and fingertips into their work. 

Using donated threads and cloth, they gather each week at a North Knoxville home, sewing for a common goal.

"We have about 20 volunteers who help us here, and we're one of about seven quilting organizations right here in East Tennessee that make quilts," said Dennis Taylor, coordinator for Quilts of Valor.

These aren't just any quilts. The Quilts of Valor will soon be wrapped around veterans who've served our country and who now are owed our appreciation.

"I have a husband who was in World War II and also he served in Korea. I just have a great feeling for the veterans," said Wanda Brown.

Brown is one of around 10,000 volunteers around the country who sew these Quilts of Valor.   In the 10 years since its founding, more than 92,000 quilts have been awarded.

This week at the Corryton Senior Center, three more quilts were given new homes.

Three World War II veterans were wrapped in the love of a thankful nation.

"I can wrap a quilt around a soldier or veteran and thank him for his service, and as I wrap him in that quilt, it's just like wrapping him with hugs from all the people who've made that quilt," said Taylor.

Taylor is the East Tennessee regional coordinator of Quilts of Valor. He is a Vietnam War veteran and received his quilt last November.

His sewing groups make around 200 quilts a year. While that seems like a lot, it is not nearly enough.

"There is a huge demand for quilts. We have about four and half million veterans that qualify for a quilt, but we can't keep up with that," said Taylor.

Despite the numbers, these volunteers sew on because they say this is important.

"These veterans have put their lives on the line to preserve our freedoms and liberties, and we owe so much to them. The reality is these veterans come home and unfortunately they're not appreciated as much as they should be," Taylor said.

With each quilt completed, a veteran is appreciated just a little bit more. For these volunteers, it's a patriotic mission Made in Tennessee.

Quilts of Valor operates without any government funding. Everything is donated.

If you'd like help, you can visit their website.

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